Pestsov, Karenin, and Koznyshev continue their earlier conversation about the Russification of Poland (i.e., Russia's occupation of Poland in the nineteenth century, discussed in Part 4, Chapter 9).
The three discuss how it is that some nations have the authority to annex, or occupy, others. What is it that gives some countries a leg up over others? Koznyshev says that it all comes down to education. This leads into a discussion over which is better, a classical education (i.e., in Latin, Greek, philosophy, and literature) or a natural scientific education (in astronomy, botany, and other sciences).
This conversation leads over into the education of women: should it just be a matter of women's liberation? Or should we believe that women can occupy parliamentary positions and join the bureaucracy the same way men can?
Koznyshev and Pestsov support the idea of women's total inclusion in government, while Oblonsky and Karenin both seem to have misgivings about changes in women's natural role in the family.
Dolly, who has just entered the conversation, comments that a woman entering politics would probably be forsaking her family. Pestsov doesn't see a problem with this, because he stands for the general ideal that a woman should be allowed to be involved in all the tasks men do.